Office Christmas Party for one?

6th December 2017

Not even a week into December and Christmas party season is well and truly upon us. Who doesn’t love the office Christmas “do”, partying the night away with the people you have worked hard with for the last year is often the high-point of the corporate calendar.

It can be a great opportunity to mix with your colleagues in a relaxed environment but there is a reason people say don’t mix business with pleasure. Free alcohol and a festive atmosphere can often end in disaster and regret so be sure to remember it is a work event!

Whilst you’re dodging dangerously placed mistletoe at your Christmas party, spare a thought for all the contractors and freelancers missing out on the workplace merriment.

There are many benefits to being part of the ever-growing flexible workforce; those who are choosing to leave behind the archetypal working week. Perks such as setting your own hours, working for only half the year, avoiding office politics and working from home to name a few.

However, a recent study reported that more than three quarters of the flexible workforce feel left out and isolated during the festive season. Not being considered part of the permanent contracted workforce  often means you don’t make it onto the Christmas party guest list.
Coupled with the Christmas party invite snub, watching your permanently employed peers enjoy paid time off, Christmas jumper day and office secret Santa can add to the feeling of seclusion.

All is not lost though, freelancer Christmas parties are becoming increasingly popular with many fellow contractors and freelancers finding themselves in the same boat and organising their own festive “do”.

What does HMRC say?

There are some benefits to going it solo at Christmas for limited company directors.

HMRC states that they allow a tax exemption if a Christmas party meets the below criteria:

  • Is an annual event, such as a Christmas or Summer party
  • Is open to all of employees
  • Costs no more than £150 per head

Whatever you’re doing this year we hope you enjoy it.

If you have any further questions about business expenses, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with one of the team at Walker Smith on 0161 359 3235.

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